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How Yahoo assist Government Censorship in China(3)

Posted by Author on August 19, 2006

(cont’d…)
Yahoo! user data employed by Chinese authorities to help convict critics: Yahoo! China provides a Chinese-language email service at Yahoo.com.cn. Independent tests have indicated, and Yahoo! executives have confirmed, that data for the Yahoo.com.cn email accounts is housed on servers inside the PRC.59 As of this writing, court documents obtained by human rights groups have shown that user data handed over by Yahoo! to Chinese law enforcement officials has assisted in the arrest and conviction of at least four people who used email accounts from the Yahoo.com.cn service. The four cases are as follows:

  • Shi Tao: The Chinese journalist was sentenced in April 2005 to ten years in prison for “divulging state secrets abroad.” According to court documents translated by the Dui Hua Foundation and released by Reporters Sans Frontières. Yahoo! complied with requests from the Chinese authorities for information regarding an IP address connected to a cn.mail.yahoo.com email account. The information provided by Yahoo! Holdings (Hong Kong) Holdings linked Shi Tao to materials posted on a U.S.-based dissident website. 60 (See Appendix III for full case details.)

  • Li Zhi: The Internet writer was sentenced in December 2003 to eight years in prison for “inciting subversion of the state authority.” According to the court verdict originally posted on the Internet by the Chinese law firm that defended him, user account information provided by Yahoo! was used to build the prosecutors’ case. 61 (See Appendix IV for full case details.)

  • Jiang Lijun: The Internet writer and pro-democracy activist was sentenced in November 2003 to four years in prison for “subversion.” According to the court verdict obtained and translated by the Dui Hua Foundation, Yahoo! helped confirm that an anonymous email account used to transmit politically sensitive emails was used by Jiang.62 (See Appendix V for full case details.) (to be cont’d…)

– From IV. How Multinational Internet Companies assist Government Censorship in China,
of “Race to the Bottom: Corporate Complicity in Chinese Internet Censorship,” by Human Rights Watch

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Related:
Undermining freedom of expression in China, Amnesty

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